The time for Digital revolution has taken a new turn. Smart phones are gaining popularity and simultaneously smart cars are being developed. Car Manufacturers are finding newer and better ways of connecting with customers. People are gaining more credibility and finding easier ways of connecting with their favorite automobile brand. Here is an article that highlights on the apps launched by various automobile manufacturers that help them understand the customers better and provide them what they need:
These days, carmakers are loath to giving up their key information and entertainment links in their vehicles with hopes to turn dashboard technology into a reason for buying their vehicle and potentially to earn revenue by selling information and mobile connectivity. This makes car manufacturers spend big money working on their own systems even as they increasingly offer links to Apple or Google’s systems alongside their own.
Manufacturers like Honda and GM recently started installing CarPlay as an option in their new vehicles and both say the software is well received. The Android Auto is coming for new models.
Jay Guzowski, a senior product manager at American Honda, said the company can’t give up on its own system, called HondaLink. “Not everybody has an Apple or Android phone or they aren’t interested in using that environment,” .
Toyota Motor Corp is largely avoiding Silicon Valley’s tech giants and relies exclusively on their own systems to maintain the most direct link with customers. Toyota and others say Apple and Google systems aren’t the right fit for every buyer. Not everyone owns a smart phone capable of linking to CarPlay or Android Auto, and the third-party systems can’t be used in every market.
In countries including China, the modified Android operating systems used in phones won’t work with Android Auto and Apple’s iPhone isn’t as widely used as it is in Europe and the U.S. In addition, the Apple and Android systems don’t typically link to the buttons on a car’s steering wheel, or function well in areas with poor mobile phone reception. The systems also don’t connect to the auto’s heating and air-conditioning.
Potentially handing troves of driver and driving-data to Apple or Google also presents red flags, and has ignited debate among auto executives.
“We are competing for mind-share inside the vehicle,” said Don Butler, Ford Motor’s director of connected vehicles. The Dearborn, Mich., company first released its Sync system, which runs apps, sends texts and receives messages through voice activation, in its 2008 model year cars.
Maruti has also taken a stride towards customer service. The Maruti Care Service mobile app comes in handy no matter where the customer is. Some of the more interesting features with the Maruti Care app are:
Maruti Suzuki Connect:
- Service Appointment enables you to book your car’s service appointment at any of the Maruti Dealer outlets with a simple touch.
- Enables you locate a dealer workshop with the help of Google maps from your current location just by entering City/Workshop/Pin Code and also gets the address and contact information.
- Checking service records and the history of your vehicle based on dealer workshop visits.
- Keeping track of the cost of maintenance of the car on yearly basis for Scheduled / Unscheduled Services and even for Body Repairs.
- Sharing your service experience to help improve services.
- Getting an estimated cost of the next scheduled service and other demand jobs.
- Maximize car’s life through some intelligent driving and maintenance tips.
- Helps you know live traffic conditions between your destination and location you’re headed to.
- GPS Trip meter trips from one destination to another that can be recorded and saved for future references.
- Makes when your car is due for next scheduled service and set reminder accordingly.
- Saves GPS enabled location and images of your car while parking in vast crowded places and finds the route shown by the app.
- Enables you to fetch personal information as registered with Maruti Suzuki.
- Fetches car’s information as registered with Maruti Suzuki. This can be modified from the nearest Maruti Dealer.
- Saves personal and car documents like PAN card, Driving License, RC Book and also sets the date of expiry with reminder so that it can be renewed on time.
- Sends all types of notifications like reminders for document renewal, service appointment date and time.
- Gets contact information of Maruti Suzuki Regional offices for any concern/feedback.
With plans of digitizing the vehicle experience in India, Honda Cars India has launched Honda Connect; a smartphone application bundled with a device that offers a variety of functions controllable through a smartphone. This app was unveiled at the Paris Motor Show and has a total of 21 functions that come in handy in day to day life.
Some of the features:
· Detailed trip analysis such as speed, duration with pit stops details
· Service alert with calendar function and spending
· Information about nearest petrol station and Honda service stations with in-app navigation system
· Impact alert with SOS feature to connect with Honda dealers and service stations
· Location sharing with family and friends
· Option to locate your Honda vehicle in a crowded area
· Notification alerts on your smartphone about your vehicle’s health
· Option to connect directly to a customer service executive.
Hope you are installing the apps in your mobile right now